Two Sarpy County dispatchers who successfully directed life-saving efforts over the telephone were honored May 21 by the Sarpy County Board of Commissioners.
Casey Wadas and Danica Manchester were each praised for calmly directing people through life-saving procedures even while the callers were in a state of panic.
Manchester was recognized for an incident that occurred at 7:29 a.m. Jan. 20 when she answered a 911 call from a woman who reported her husband had stopped breathing. She told the woman a Papillion Fire Department emergency response team had been dispatched and then directed her to place her husband on the floor.
At that point, Manchester directed the woman to perform chest compressions and directed how to perform them, while simultaneously engaging the caller’s young son by placing him in charge of making sure the door was open for responders.
Manchester stayed with the caller until EMS crews arrived, resuscitated the patient and transported him to Midlands Hospital, lights and sirens deployed. He is now back home and unharmed.
William Muldoon, director of the Sarpy County Emergency Communications Department, said Manchester’s performance saved a life.
“Your role in the chain of patient care positively integrated with responding law enforcement and EMS personnel to save a life,” he wrote in a letter of commendation.
Wadas was honored for an incident that occurred at 5:25 p.m. Feb. 3 when she took a call from a women who was described as “frantic.” She reported a male was choking or having a heart attack and was skeptical of Wadas’s chest compression instructions because the patient appeared to be choking.
“You let them know that you were trying to help the patient and that they needed to follow your instructions,” Muldoon wrote in his letter of commendation. “You did not allow the caller’s panic to affect what you knew to be right.”
The patient was transported to Midlands Hospital by Papillion Fire Department EMS personnel, lights and sirens deployed, where he made a full recovery.
“The way you handled the call is a good example of the vital role of the ‘first’ first responder in the chain of patient care,” Muldoon wrote.
Both women received a Life Saving Award.